A Triple Threat
As we say goodbye to Black History Month with the conclusion of February and welcome Women’s History Month with the arrival of March, Philly native, Quinta Brunson can be celebrated during both months and beyond. Born and raised in Philadelphia, Quinta embodies the fierce essence of what it means to not only be a woman, to not only be Black, to not only be from Philly but instead all three!
A true triple threat or should we say powerhouse, Quinta is inspiringly a Black female from Philly trailblazing her way through Hollywood. It is this fierce essence Quinta exuded Sunday night at the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards as she walked across the stage, with her fellow casemates, to accept the award for Best Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series for “Abbott Elementary”, where Quinta is the creator, show runner, writer, producer, and cast member.
A Sprinkle of Real Life
“Abbott Elementary“, in its second season, is a mockumentary starring Brunson as Janine Teagues, a positive second-grade teacher at the poorly funded Abbott Elementary, a fictional predominantly Black school in Philadelphia. The ensemble cast includes Tyler James Williams, Janelle James, Lisa Ann Walter, Chris Perfetti, Sheryl Lee Ralph, and William Stanford Davis.
Although the school itself is fictional, Brunson’s inspiration for its name and the name of the show comes from a sprinkle of real life. Joyce Abbott, now retired, was a teacher in the school district for over 25 years and was also Quinta Brunson’s 6th grade teacher.
As told to 6abc news, Abbott recalls the moment she learned officially she was the inspiration behind the name: “One day, watching 6abc news, the newscaster was like ‘Ms. Abbott, if you’re watching,’ she was speaking of Abbott Elementary, ‘Quinta would like to reconnect with you.’ That’s when it was actually confirmed.” The two shared a heartfelt reunion last year on Jimmy Kimmel Live!
The Serious Side of Satire
“Abbott Elementary” although satirical in nature brings to light serious, genuine issues faced by teachers in urban cities all across America. The school is underfunded, mismanaged, and teachers do not last for more than 2 years. Engaging students living in urban communities is in itself a challenge when they too face challenges outside of the school building. The show showcases the serious side of satire and the continued reform and support needed in our city school districts, especially those predominantly black, in order to close the disparity gap between black students and students of other races.
It’s Still A Philly Thing
Like a proud and true Philadelphian, Quinta continues to spotlight aspects of our city that reminds viewers, “its still a Philly Thing,” including The Philadelphia Zoo and the The Philadelphia Flyers mascot, Gritty. The latest episode will air tomorrow, Wednesday March 1st, 2023 and is available to watch on ABC, Hulu, HBO Max, Prime Video, Vudu or Apple TV.
This week’s episode will feature Mural Arts Philadelphia — the nation’s largest public art program, which has helped Philadelphia reach international recognition as the “Mural Capital of the World”. It’s an exciting time for Quinta ahead of Sunday’s win, the mockumentary-style series was already on a winning streak, racking up several Emmy and Golden Globe wins. We see you sis!